SRAM’s latest video related to the American company’s eTap wireless groupset explains how the inspiration was the fastest wheeled vehicles on the planet, Formula 1 cars.

>>> SRAM Red eTap review (video)

Often cycling follows where Formula 1 leads, the adoption of carbon fibre and wind tunnels for refining aerodynamics are just two examples.

Mirroring the the elite race cars SRAM decided to simplify the rider interaction with the gears to three simple actions.

>>> Top 10 road bike innovations

Right paddle for up shifts and left paddle for down. To move the front mech press the paddles at the same time.

>>> SRAM eTap vs Shimano Di2: which is better?

The result is a system which is said to make it nigh on impossible to mistake a down shift for an up shift. The paddle shifting system was not possible before with conventional mechanical or wired systems.

sram red etap featured image

Batteries are still needed, but SRAM eTap is equipped with interchangeable battery backs that are light enough to attach the derailleurs.

>>> How to install SRAM eTap: step by step guide (video)

The main concerns raised regarding the wireless set up is the potential interference, but SRAM claims the system’s wireless algorithm is encrypted more securely than any ATM.

After much anticipation eTap has definitely caused quite a stir with the UK SRAM distributor, Fisher Outdoor Leisure, confirming that its first batch of SRAM eTap systems have already been snapped up by its dealers.

  • MrHaematocrit

    Really they expect us to believe the shifting is inspired by a F1 cars flappy paddle gearbox. SHAM are such jokers.
    I had a Sega genesis back in the day and a steering wheel with flappy paddle shifting, never thought that was like cycle shifting.

  • Stevo

    Formula 1 cars aren’t the fastest wheeled vehicles on planet, obviously.

    Also, it is questionable whether this control arrangement is more intuitive or convenient than conventional systems with a clear division between front and rear shift controls.

    And regarding the claim that “the result is a system which is said to make it nigh on impossible to mistake a down shift for an up shift”: what has changed? With Ergopower and STI, and even with frame or bar end mounted levers, up is up and down is down. How often does any rider shift in the wrong direction? This seems to me like a non-solution to a non-problem.